Leather – Revisiting my Path.

I’ve been thinking and re-reading my old posts a lot lately, and I have to admit I’ve changed my view on quite a few things, my opinions and thoughts have evolved and therefore I think it’s high time I revisited some of my older posts and shared my updated thoughts.

So what’s first you might ask?

A topic near and dear to my heart: Leather.

In the past, I referred to it as Hetero Leather.

I don’t necessarily make that distinction now, and not because I think recognition of Gay and Lesbian Leather cultures detract and are somehow wrong. Just the opposite, in fact, I think recognition of the longstanding traditions and guiding principles are what will help us grow as Leatherfolk on a whole, and because of that, I’d like to think we’re all in this together, orientations are secondary.

I read SO MUCH trying to understand Leather, and it all led back to gay leathermen, and leatherwomen. I automatically assumed that as an (at the time) straight, CIS man there was no inlet for me into Leather culture. What a bunch of bullshit thinking that was.  Thanks to some amazing people and their wisdom I think much differently now.

I’ve spent the majority of my time since then getting to know Leathermen, Leatherwomen, Boy’s, Girls. and all manner of Leatherfolk. One overriding thing I have learned is that Leather is what you make it. Guided by service, respect, honesty, loyalty, integrity and being an open-minded student of life in general.

Leather isn’t about being gifted Leather to wear (although that’s awesome too.)

Leather isn’t about what genitals you have, or what genitals you like to stick your genitals into (or have stuck in you.)

Leather isn’t about status or personal gain.

Leather isn’t something that fits in a nice neat little box.

So, going forward here – what is Leather as far as I am concerned?

Well here is what I consider to be my Leather path.

At its core Leather has close ties to sex, rough Leathersex, S&M, all manner of deviant shit, which I love, however it’s about being unapologetic about loving these things. It is who we are, it’s about wearing whatever gets you hot, and (within limits) Fucking or playing exactly how you want. I Love Beating ass, bruising the hell out of it and listening to the whimpers when I decide to fuck it. End of story, if I find a partner who likes being on the receiving end, and we go make that happen that’s Leather, you need not apologize or feel guilty for any of it.

It’s about being of service, both to people, and to your community. Give back, be an ear for a friend, tell them they’re being an idiot if they need it, buy them a beer, or a place to crash if shit has gone south, teach someone a skill. Give your time to your community, Support local groups, go to fundraising events, offer some time to volunteer. Be of use – Master, slave, it doesn’t matter: The highest form of humbleness comes from being of service to someone or something worthy of your effort.

Respect everyone who deserves respect. From the most wealthy CEO to the bartender keeping you in good booze – We all end up in the same sized box. The true measure of a Leatherperson  is how you treat those who can do absolutely nothing for you. It can be as simple as a please and thank you to the kid at the front counter at McDonald’s, it’s the same please and thank you would give to the guy signing your cheques.

Be honest. Not only with the people you meet, be honest with yourself. Be honest about your strengths, your weaknesses. Be honest about every little part of yourself about who you are, who you want to be, and whether you are living a life that is authentically your own.

Be loyal to the people that deserve loyalty. I have Dot, our Leather family, and another house we are part of who have my implicit loyalty. All they have to do is ask, and if something is in my power it’s theirs. I would defend them to the ends of the earth because I trust they would do the same for me.

Integrity. This one is rather hard to quantify, integrity is different for everyone. Because I believe myself to be a person of integrity – I will do my utmost to conduct myself living as close to my morals, beliefs, and honor as a man of my word, because to me that is integrity.

I will never stop learning, never stop growing, stagnation is a slow death by doing nothing, Always better yourself, and move forward.

That is My Leather path.

In the end, it’s not about clothes or any one sexual orientation.

It’s about being unapologetically you, having a guiding set of principles, and living the fuck out of them every day.

So, here I am two and a half years later.

I have grown.

I have lived authentically.

I have evolved.

I have much still to learn and work on.

I have a Leather Path.

I hope you find yours if you are looking.

In Leather,

 

Syn.

Dear Brain – Please Shut The Fuck Up.

I have to admit sometimes it’s difficult for me to reconcile my reality with what my brain is telling me.

My little fae and I have settled into  a bit of a routine, Life has been busy lately. Little time to play, but our TPE is still strong.

I love all the time we’ve been getting together, but I do miss playing – I was/am more comfortable with my sadistic side, however in becoming so, I find I miss our sessions…. They seem to only happen when we travel to the other city for events, and even then Co-topping is what usually occurs.

Here is where the disconnect happens.

I’m at a loss for how to make things happen more organically – between work, kids visiting more than periodically, the need for sleep for both of us on off(ish) hours than the other, and the fact that I prefer play to be unplanned, leads to a difficult time making it happen.

Couple all of that, with the issues I’ve had accepting my Sadism in the past and my logical brain is wondering what the fuck is wrong with me.

I don’t know why these words fell out of my head, or what if anything the solution is, however here it is.

I plan to write more, as work now allows for it, but just a quick entry to let you know I’m still alive and moving somewhat.

 

Regards,

 

Syn.

Body Image and Body Positivity For Men.

I really should be working on my presentation for MAsT coming up, but I find I can’t. Not yet anyway.

I’ve been having a rough week self-esteem wise.

No longer working (Got fired from a rather Homo/Transphobic place I spoke up about [they, of course, found a reason to fire me]). Not really having much of a support system/friend base here at home, and my manageable but still present depression, has created a fairly impressive “low” for me.

Something I have been mulling over recently, and for quite some time, is not really a double standard, but perhaps more of something that slips by marginally unnoticed for a few reasons. I hope to shed some light on it, as well as perhaps put my own mind at rest, or even just catharsis through putting it all on “paper”.

Male body image issues.

All the time you see Female body image empowerment. This is a fantastic thing! people should be comfortable with who they are and celebrated. I do have a caveat for this for both men and women, though – As long as you are healthy! Not to say we need to look like the preconceived images of modern day Adonis or Aphrodite, far from it, but one should not be a walking time bomb of health issues either.

From BBW dance nights(which I enjoy going to immensely btw), to support groups, meme’s, and all manner of other empowering supports. They’re everywhere, which as I said is fantastic!

Women are constantly held to a perceived standard by media:  Kim Kardashian, Ruby Rose, Scarlett Johansson, and Megan Fox, the list goes on.

Men are also held to a similar standard: Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson, Brad Pitt, Ryan Reynolds, Brad Gosling and Connor McGregor.

All of these men hold a few things in common besides their star power – Ridiculously sculpted physiques. Time and time again people try to sell you on the idea of fat loss, thermogenic’s (fuck these things btw), the next big bad workout routine, 6 pack abs in 12 steps! What people don’t realize is two things they can’t dictate are a genetic predisposition. Not everyone can get down to 8% body fat and hold it (yes single digit body fat is where visible abs happen). Then there is dedication – don’t get me wrong, more and more people will spend tons of time in the gym, eating properly and all the other things you need to do. However, guys like The Rock spend HOURS in the gym, same with these other stars , when preparing for a role they spend hundreds of thousands of dollars on diet, trainers, and pure time spent. The average guy just can’t, or if they do they’ll sacrifice other areas of their life to achieve, and it can be detrimental to living a balanced life.

Always be happy, Never be satisfied.

My body type is  one that will never be at single digit body fat, I am a mesomorph but I did take a period of time to spend 5 days a week in the gym, my goal wasn’t fat loss, though, I wanted to get as strong as possible. As I once told a friend, I don’t do a lot of cardio, I’d rather kill the bear than run from it.

During my time at the gym, I overheard things leveled right at me by people who assumed my music was on. I won’t go into it, but let me just say, they were some very negative comments about my physique. Body shaming doesn’t just happen to women, I have had it directed at me as well.

Even as recent as two weeks ago, I was chatting with a friend (via video) and someone passing by in the background exclaimed “Put your fucking shirt on! We don’t want to see that!”. Keep in mind I am a big guy, and hairy as a grizzly. These two things have always been an object of ridicule until I met my little fae, she for some reason loves both my size and my Furriness. However, thanks to my previous experiences I am VERY self-conscious about these things, if you’ve ever seen me shirtless, then I trust you, more than most.

The other body image issue men are constantly bombarded with is something that bothers the shit out of me, as well as something that was brought closer to the surface thanks to of all things a radio add I heard not long ago.

One of the most vicious insults you often heard hurled at a man is penis size (this is not including the Fetish of small penis humiliation). “limp dick”, “small”, “is it in yet?”.

You’ve likely heard these things leveled at someone at some point, and really if you’re looking to truly insult a guy, the penis, and inherent masculinity is closely tied together.

Even on sex-positive sites like fetlife I see lines like “I’ma size queen so if you’re not hung don’t bother”, and other similar “size queen/king” statements.  How many guys have actually measured the size of their penis ? More than you think.

The other day we were driving to a neighboring city and I actually heard a radio ad for something promising to increase length and girth all the while a smug female voice promising that it would drive women crazy, WHILE implying the bulk(no pun intended) of men were inadequate. Fuck those people, fuck them with our average sized dicks in the ear.

Now, I’ve never considered myself anything but average, honestly, I DID measure myself when I was younger, and always considered myself small when you compare to the 8 to 10-inch monster cocks you see in porn. No one ever talks about an average dick, dildo’s and vibes are 7 to 8 inches long. and what you see on fetlife are guys who post penis pics – apparently the new rage is holding your dick next to a can of coke, or hairspray to prove its fucking huge. Personally, if I rely on my dick for self-worth, I’d never have sex again – I can’t compete with Hernando the monster cock, or the guy who’s as thick around as a bottle of water. (I have seen this, and really genetics ? what the actual fuck?) But I am sure those who enjoy that are especially happy. I’d just prefer to see more love for guys who are average.

All in all male self-image is a huge concern, but that brings me to my last point.

None of this is ever fucking mentioned because it flies under the radar. Men are not to show weakness, WE DO NOT talk about our problems because it shows weakness, it’s just another thing that is “unmanly”. I say fuck that, by nature, we are simply making the problem worse, men who show weakness are to be further ridiculed. “we don’t talk about our feelings”, “we don’t show that anything bothers us”, and my favorite “be a man about it”.

All of these things are used to shame us into silence, and largely those of us with issues are SCARED to get the help we need.

In the end, we NEED more male body acceptance, for ALL body types. We need to realize that male self-image is a bigger problem than people believe, and we need to start appreciating men for who they are, not based on an unrealistic interpretation of masculinity perpetuated by Hollywood, and big media.

Men, Women, Humans in general are ALL beautiful, and we deserve to be told so.

Power Exchange, BDSM and Mental Illness: How We Cope.

There are certain things that I think about, quite a bit. Especially in terms of Power exchange, Chief among those is self care and mental well-being of my slave and any other s-type I am currently involved with or protecting.

Sure physicality is a big part of everything, and it’s fun, cathartic, leaves some pretty spectacular reminders for a while, and is the primary focus of many a BDSM relationship.

But.

That’s not where Power exchange REALLY shines.

As a Master there are other things that create and encompass the power exchange. Recently my slave has been in one of her “lows” it becomes difficult for her to summon the will to function within a normal headspace. Things like dragging ass at work, reluctance to get out of bed, low self image, and a constant need for reassurance that I do infact love her and she is worthy of it. There is more but I think you get the gist.

There are however things you can do.

So in a normal non power exchange relationship as well as a power exchange the most important thing you can do is identify what you’re dealing with, as my slave is rather private about her struggles I will leave her illness as hers to tell – however if you put 2 and 2 together from here, as well as entries on her blog you get a fairly clear picture.

So after diagnosis (professional help is important here), In addition to therapy and medication (if applicable), what can we as Masters/Dominants do ?

Largely the onus is on the slave to follow through with Masters orders – For me, the primary is for my slave to take care of my possessions to the best of her ability, and most cherished of those is she, herself. So the slave should learn what she can about her illness, coping strategies, properly adhering to medication schedules, and other forms of self care during issues. Even the slave recognizing the onset of a low, or other issues can go a long way in offsetting potential damage.

So what do I do when my slave hits a low ?

Well, I will admit I am not as rigid in the power exchange as I would be when she is at 100% – this is not to say the power exchange disappears, however I may do a bit extra to reassure her that everything is OK, and that I still love and value her and her service. Ensuring to remind her to eat, shower (the power of hot water is not to be underestimated), basics that might otherwise go neglected.

That said, I have been known to call her out on behavior that leans towards her lows, and knowing her well enough to push the issue when I have to. Structure is important to people with mental health issues, and not straying too far from routine can go a long way in dealing with/shortening episodes.

Now I should add that these particular coping methods are how I and my slave deal with mental illness in OUR dynamic.

That said something you should keep in mind is that dealing with mental illness can be incredibly stressful for the Master as well, and after an episode passes, I highly advise doing something FOR YOURSELF to depressurize, refocus and recharge, so that the power exchange can continue with as little disruption as possible. It can be just as draining for the Master as it can be for the slave, and as I mentioned, staying as close to routine or normal as you possibly can is in my opinion the best thing you can do for both parties.

In the end making sure that the Master keeps the slave accountable for their actions, because mental illness is not excuse for a lapse in deference or service – there should be consequences to actions no matter the circumstances. Educate yourself on the illness in question – BOTH of you. It is an excellent opportunity for essays,  formulating coping mechanisms, and strategy. Read blogs of people who have the same illness, medical journals, documentaries, learn voraciously, because knowledge is power.

In the end both parties need to work at maintenance, and do so together, which, is the key to success in any sort of authority exchange (if not vanilla) relationship.

***These are my thoughts and my experiences alone, your results, methods and experiences will likely be different but I do hope at the very least I may have given some insight and perhaps a starting point for other dynamics who find themselves in the same boat that we are in.***

 

Regards,

 

Syn.

My Little Fae.

This is the first lifestyle related post on this subject, and one I never really thought about writing until my little fae mentioned it the other day, I have to admit it had never even crossed my mind to write (again) on why I call my slave My Little Fae. It has been a part of our lives for almost as far back as we have been a couple, and the meaning has evolved with our relationship over time.

 

As I mentioned in my origin post our journey exploded out of the gate, and in retrospect I knew it was going to be a different experience than anything I had ever had in my life. She was the anti-thesis of everything that had come before. Kind, patient, and caring, she saw something in me that at that point I didn’t even see in myself, Dominance.

I don’t remember exactly when I started calling her by that name, but I do remember why. Despite what history, folklore and some current sources would have us believe, I see the Fae-folk as something that embodies a magic and light that is hidden or rare in all of us.

When our (then vanilla) relationship began I found myself awed at the immediate strength of it, she was caring, responsive and would communicate with me… All things I had no frame of reference for in a relationship, at the risk of over romanticizing – She was showing me a whole new world I never thought existed.

As we Progressed in our relationship and the organic TPE evolved “my little fae” has taken on a whole additional meaning – As my slave she constantly finds ways to open my mind, show me new things, and by guiding her, learning more about this new world I have been introduced to.

I have taken more than a few days to write this. I started Monday, and it is now Thursday… I keep thinking that by coming back to it, I can add or explain something. Truth be told I can’t – it’s so hard to put in words exactly what my little fae means to me as her Master, friend and lover, hopefully this small explanation at least sheds some light on it. For now I will simply let our journey together speak for itself, and how I view her.

I may not be a “traditional” Master, but thanks to my little fae, I am one that is never alone, and will always have my best friend with me.

 

Regards,

 

Syn